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collingwood

Collingwood 2010 - memorial ceremony in Tynemouth

Posted by ylla on Mar.14th.2010 at 11:28
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I spent most of last weekend at a folk dance festival in Durham, but I didn't quite make it to the end - I ran off instead to the memorial ceremony at the Collingwood monument in Tynemouth.

They started the ceremony by 'firing' the guns from the Royal Sovereign - they were really somehow wired up with pyrotechnics - but I was still on my way down the road at that point, so all I can really say is that the seagulls didn't like it much. By the time I got up the hill, they had started the church service in a big white tent, while an impressive number of people were gathered on the hill and down the slope to the river - a lot more than I expected, even if some had just come to see things going bang. There were also sailors standing on the monument, looking impressive.

The service was being played over loudspeakers, but the sound didn't carry well - I heard a bit, and don't really remember much, but it was well done. After a while wandered down the slope to the water's edge in time to see HMS Cumberland coming down the river. After that there were a lot of things going bang for a while, including an amazing smoke ring from one of the guns on shore which made everyone around me laugh (I only got a picture of some less impressive smoke).

I went back up the slope then and saw the sailors who had been on the monument marching off it, and after a while they started letting people up, or at least not stopping them when they ducked under the rope, so I made it up onto the monument to see the wreaths.

Although all the official part was impressive, I think one of my favourite things was standing there on the monument afterwards and hearing a man beside me telling the lady he was with about how at one point Collingwood and Nelson had been mucking about with the same woman, and that Royal Sovereign was so fast and so far in the lead at Trafalgar because she had just been cleaned, as if these were things that had happened last week, or last year.

It was a beautiful day, so after the ceremony I went for a walk along the sea front with ice cream, before heading back to Newcastle (where I failed to get any Collingwood beer, so I'll have to try again), and then home.

I just wish it hadn't all been the same weekend as the festival, because I would have loved to go to the concert and storytelling and Master and Commander showing in Morpeth and the parade in Newcastle as well - it just didn't work out that way.

(Photo gallery listing is here. Original weekend post is here)

Comments:


esteven
esteven at 2010-03-14 11:41 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you so much for this post and the photos. I was most impressed with the sailors standing on the monument and later marching off. I am also glad that Collingwood got the recognition he deserves.

Thank you also for that bit of conversation you had overheard because it is wonderful when people speak about these times as if they were yesterday. Makes them come alive. Maybe there will be another chance at some storytelling or concert?
Jen
ylla at 2010-03-14 16:52 (UTC) (Link)
I know, I thought it was lovely :)

I'm not sure what else I'm going to make it to (except Menorca!), but we'll see :)
esteven
esteven at 2010-03-14 17:05 (UTC) (Link)
May many Collingwood events cross your way!
poppenhuis
grace_poppy at 2010-03-14 16:39 (UTC) (Link)
Yay Tynemouth and Newcastle!!!! It looks like a beautiful day and fun things going boom. Nice that there was such a good crowd too. They must like things that go boom in Tynemouth. I was telling sharpiefan just yesterday that I once saw reenactors for the American Civil War at Tynemouth Priory, which seemed very odd to me. They were firing guns and waving Confederate flags. XD
Jen
ylla at 2010-03-14 16:51 (UTC) (Link)
It was a gorgeous day, although quite cold - both times I've been to Tynemouth have been.

How bizarre :)
I haven't actually been in the priory, so I'll have to go back again. I've been kind of in a hurry both times.
shipratz at 2010-03-15 23:12 (UTC) (Link)

hi there, it's ShipRat!

Thanks for pointing me to this report!

I have a new favourite photo of yours: 18 of 20. Now that I've studied it closely, the beautiful half-light, the sailors' solemn faces, and the pleasure on the faces of the people watching, are quite moving.

20 of 20 is the new runner-up favourite - it allows me a good, solid, serious look at those once terrible weapons. The tools of Collingwood's trade.

I think one of my favourite things was standing there on the monument afterwards and hearing a man beside me telling the lady he was with about how at one point Collingwood and Nelson had been mucking about with the same woman, and that Royal Sovereign was so fast and so far in the lead at Trafalgar because she had just been cleaned, as if these were things that had happened last week, or last year.

That's how the accounts of the death of Nelson affected me, a few years ago, when I first read them in full. The impact was very powerful - it felt as though it had happened yesterday. As if the force of Nelson's personality reached across 2 centuries and grabbed me by the collar.

Collingwood and Nelson mucking about with the same woman? I'm sure Nelson would have liked us to think he was seriously in the running... ;-)
Jen
ylla at 2010-03-16 12:46 (UTC) (Link)

Re: hi there, it's ShipRat!

18 annoys me, because the camera has picked up on the bright sky instead of the dark stone, and made everything sort of hazy. But it was really just hold the camera up and hope, at that point!

20 is the one I used for the album preview picture, though - I'd quite like that shot without the people and wires, I think. If I go back to see the priory...

She was still married at the time, wasn't she? :)
shipratz at 2010-03-16 15:36 (UTC) (Link)

Re: hi there, it's ShipRat!

>She was still married at the time, wasn't she? :)

What's that got to do with the price of rice in China? ;-)
Jen
ylla at 2010-03-16 16:25 (UTC) (Link)

Re: hi there, it's ShipRat!

Might not matter to Nelson, I suppose!
But it might have mattered to her?

I don't know if there *was* serious running, really - if there was a later proposal from either side, it apparently came to nothing. And Nelson seems to have got distracted anyway :)
shipratz at 2010-03-16 15:38 (UTC) (Link)

Re: hi there, it's ShipRat!

forgot to say - I can fix the haze for you if you want. I can also get rid of the wire.
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